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Pet Food – Pet Foods
One of the challenges we face on Pesach is finding pet food which is Halachically acceptable. One issue pertains to Pesach itself, ensuring that the product does not contain any Chametz and the other issue pertains to the rest of the year, where pet food may be comprised of milk and meat mixed together. The Torah states three times ‘one may not cook a goat in its mother’s milk’. From this we derive that it is forbidden to cook milk and meat together, it is forbidden to eat milk and meat together
and it is forbidden to have benefit from milk and meat together.
Purchasing pet food on Pesach can be tricky and one cannot always rely on food ingredient panels. Look
out for wheat, cracked flour, germ, gluten, groats, middlings, starch, barley, oats, pasta, rye, and brewers dried yeast. Should you not know the meaning of a certain ingredient, do not hesitate to contact your
Rabbinic authority. Dog and cat food generally contain gravy or sauce which is Chametz.
Kitniyos, legumes such as rice and beans, may be given to animals even though these ingredients are not
eaten by Ashkenazi Jews.
The following is a list of commonly found items on pet food ingredient panels which are allowed on Pesach:
Beans, Buckwheat, Brewers rice, Corn, Grain sorghum, Millet, Peanuts, Peas, Rice, Safflower, Sesame, Soybeans, Soyflower, Sunflower
It is forbidden to leave a pet with a non-Jew during Pesach if one knows that the non-Jew will feed the pet Chametz. Since there are many pet foods that do
contain Chametz, one should not leave his pet at a kennel unless the kennel will supply the pet with non-Chametz food or the owner of the pet has stipulated which
non-Chametz food the kennel may serve.
Where it necessitates, one may sell his animal to a non-Jew who will then take
the pet into his own property and take care of it accordingly, as well as feed the pet whatever he chooses. This process should be done under the
guidance of a Halachic authority.